NextBillion’s Most-Viewed, Most-Shared Posts for August: Investable supply chains, ATMS for all in India and angels in the UK
Our collective demand for ethical supply chains is growing. Unfortunately, opportunities to channel that demand into ample supply for benevolent investors lags well behind.
This is probably the reason why The Supply Chains of the Future: How Tau Investment Management is using strategic supply chain investment to transform the garment industry was our most-read post for the month of August. To make a real dent, as consumers, we can’t just rely solely on new players who promise everything that will make us feel warm and fuzzy when we check out of a store or add something to our online shopping cart. Improving worker health, safety and wages across emerging markets will require existing retail and wholesale monoliths to change their ways. And it will require the capital to do it.
That’s an abbreviated description of Tau Investment Management’s mission. Company Co-founder and Senior Vice President Benjamin Skinner told NB Financial Innovation Editor James Militzer Tau is aiming to raise and deploy a billion dollars to transform the supply chains of major global brands. James interviewed Skinner at this year’s Sustainatopia Impact Conference. Key quote:
“We fix supply chains, in a nutshell,” Skinner says. “We look for industries … where investment and know-how are needed to turn around vendors, to make them more sustainable, productive and efficient – to make the vendors of the future that are being demanded by certain brands.” After revamping the operations of these vendors through its investments, Tau is left with equity in a more profitable company – and workers are left with significantly better working conditions, Skinner says.
Check out the full post and/or watch the video interview below.
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently announced an ambitious plan for financial inclusion for all Indians, which focuses on the estimated half of the country’s population who live without a bank account. The initiative would provide them with debit cards and insurance policies (among other financial products). But in quoting the research of noted economist and consultant Ruchira Bhattamishra, Mosenkis, communications coordinator for Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA), explains that creating an inclusive financial system will require more than ATM cards.
Why does someone become an impact angel investor and what types of social enterprises should tap such a network? Clare Jones of ClearlySo shared some answers through some hard-fought lessons learned in establishing Clearly Social Angels, the UK’s first impact-focused angel investing group.
The most-shared posts via social media
It’s actually a two-parter. “Differential pricing,” or charging different prices in different market segments for the same product. On the surface it sounds like a dull economic theory, but in practice, the implications are fascinatingly important for people in emerging markets and the pharmaceutical companies hoping to serve them with a profit motive still keenly in mind. Professor Patricia Danzon of The Wharton School gave NB Health Care Editor Kyle Poplin an overview of differential pricing in a two-part interview. The articles are part of NextBillion Health Care’s market dynamics initiative launched earlier this year. Here’s why you should care, according to Danzon:
“There is often opposition to differential pricing because it may seem unfair for the same product to have a very different price in different markets – indeed, “price discrimination” sounds intrinsically unfair. But if producers are able to charge different prices to different groups of consumers based on their ability to pay, then more consumers will be able to afford the medicine and utilization of medicines will likely be greater than if all consumers are charged the same price. If utilization increases with differential pricing, overall social welfare increases.”
Scott Anderson is the managing editor of NextBillion.